Jun. 25, 1876 Little Big Horn Battle Site Big Horn County Montana, USA
Lt Harrington graduated from the United States Military Academy on June 14, 1872. In October 1872 he was assigned to Company C, 7th U.S. Cavalry in Charlotte N.C.
The commanding officer of Company C was two time Medal of Honor recipient Capt Tom Custer. Capt Custer was also the brother of LTC George Armstrong Custer.
As a member of Company C, Lt Harrington participated in Yellowstone Expedition of 1873. In 1874 he was listed as the post adjutant at Fort Rice in the Dakota Territory. During July & August of 1874, he was part of the 7th Cavalry's Black Hills Expedition.
Prior to the Battle of the Little Bighorn, Harrington accompanied Maj Reno's scout up the Powder River.
At the Battle of the Little Bighorn, Capt Custer was assigned as LTC Custer's aide-de-camp. And Harrington became the acting commander of Company C.
During the Battle of the Little Bighorn it is believed C Company took a position on flanks of Lt James Calhoun's Company L at Calhoun Ridge and near Finley Ridge. After the battle 15 bodies, including two sergeants, from C Company were found in this area.
Later battlefield excavations (cartridge casings and impacted bullets) along with Lakota/Cheyenne accounts of the fighting, indicate that Company C & L were involved in heavy fighting.
Harrington's remains were never identified. His unidentified remains were likely buried where they had been found. In 1891 all known battlefield burials were moved to a mass grave on Last Stand Hill.
Interestingly after the battle the remains of only three officers were not identified (Harrington, Porter & Sturgis). Harrington was the only one of those officers, whose personal clothing or property was never found.
Sometime after 1890 a marker with Harrington's name was placed on Last Stand Hill. This marker does not represent where Harrington's remains were found or identified. This marker was possibly placed as a memorial to Harrington's memory.
Lakota warrior accounts of the battle revealed that one soldier from the suspected area of C Company's skirmish line was able to break free & flee northward from the battlefield. This soldier, while whipping his horse with a revolver, either accidently fatally shot himself or did so on purpose. Some researchers believe this soldier could have been Harrington, who was known to be mounted on one of the fastest horses in the 7th.
Lt Harrington was survived by his wife and two children.